By Michelle McQuigge - Monday, February 4, 2013 - 0 Comments
TORONTO – The phasing-out of the penny will lurch ahead today with the Royal…
TORONTO – The phasing-out of the penny will lurch ahead today with the Royal Canadian Mint officially ending its distribution of one-cent coins to Canada’s financial institutions.
The move comes nearly a year after Finance Minister Jim Flaherty announced the demise of the penny, whose production cost came to exceed its monetary value.
But as it faces extinction in the pockets and tills of most Canadians, the humble penny is still in demand in some artistic circles where it retains significant value.
Renee Gruszecki, a Halifax-based academic and archivist, has spent the past year making a living through a jewelry business devoted primarily to preserving the country’s stray cents.
About 30,000 strategically sorted pennies fill Gruszecki’s home and eventually find their way into the accessories produced at Coin Coin Designs and Co. Continue…
By Alan Parker - Monday, February 4, 2013 at 9:00 AM - 0 Comments
The Royal Canadian Mint is finally beginning its phase-out of the penny today — and not a minute too soon.
The penny hasn’t made a lick of sense since penny candy started costing more than one cent — and that was before Lester Pearson became prime minister. It’s been costing taxpayers more than its face value to produce since the 1980s.
So good riddance to the feckless penny. Now the Mint should seriously think about getting rid of a couple of other coins that have outlived their usefulness — the nickel and the dime.
Why? Because a century of inflation has robbed them of intrinsic value.
According to the Bank of Canada’s inflation calculator, the Canadian dollar of 1914 had the purchasing power of about $20 in today’s dollars. So a penny then had the purchasing power of 20 cents today. Likewise, a nickel had roughly the same value as a dollar today and having a dime in your pocket a century ago was the same thing as having a toonie now.
The humble penny may have had even more worth back then than the Bank of Canada gives it credit for. Consider that 100 years ago most daily Canadian newspaper cost one cent. The price in competitive Toronto did not rise to two cents until 1917 and that new price held for more than 20 years. Compare that to what you pay for a newspaper today and you get some sense of the real worth of a penny a century ago.
So the penny, nickel and dime were all useful, valuable coins — 100 years ago. Today they just wear needless holes in your pocket or collect in a jar.
By Aaron Wherry - Monday, July 30, 2012 at 4:46 PM - 0 Comments
The revised date was set following initial consultations with small business and retailers who requested the transition date occur after the busy holiday shopping season. This will ensure all those participating in the transition will have ample time to prepare their business, train staff, and better inform consumers. It will also allow charities to hold dedicated ‘penny drive’ campaigns outside of existing fall fundraising drives.
The new transition date will not require new production of pennies, as the existing supply available for circulation remains sufficient to cover the period.
By Aaron Wherry - Friday, March 30, 2012 at 8:30 AM - 0 Comments
The signature promise of Jim Flaherty’s latest budget was proposed four years ago by the NDP’s Pat Martin.
“There is no business case for continuing to produce the penny. Making cents in fact makes no sense at all,” Martin said.
By macleans.ca - Wednesday, December 29, 2010 at 2:34 PM - 8 Comments
New poll finds barely a third support keeping it around
A majority of Canadians want the government to get rid of the penny, according to a new poll. The survey found 55 per cent of respondents support scrapping the near-worthless coin, compared to 35 per cent who want to keep it. British Columbians (62 per cent) are the most likely to want the penny gone, followed by Quebec (61 per cent), then Ontario (55 per cent). Men are also more likely than women to want it gone, with 65 per cent supporting its demise, compared to 45 per cent of women. The people most sad to see the penny go? Atlantic Canadians (27 per cent), Manitobans and Saskatchewans (26 per cent).
By Aaron Wherry - Friday, December 17, 2010 at 11:39 AM - 21 Comments
Mike Moffatt explains why we’re better off without the penny and why eliminating it won’t cause the nation to descend into fractional chaos.
Any change naturally comes with costs and benefits. The only significant cost is to retailers who will have to adapt their point-of-sale systems, a small change for a $130-million-a-year benefit. Prices will not rise and charities will not suffer. Let’s follow the lead of so many other countries around the world and eliminate a coin that no longer serves a useful purpose.
By macleans.ca - Tuesday, December 14, 2010 at 12:07 PM - 17 Comments
Finance committee recommends removing the coin
The Senate finance committee is expected to recommend on Tuesday that Ottawa abandon the penny. According to the Canadian Press’ sources inside the committee, it’s been agreed that a century of inflation has made the coin useless. (Since 1908, the coin has lost 95 per cent of its purchasing power, reports the Bank of Canada). Moreover, it now costs more to produce the penny—1.5 cents each—than it’s worth. The Bank of Canada’s research shows eliminating the penny would have a negligible impact on the economy. “On some transactions, the merchant loses and the consumer wins; on some, the merchant wins and the consumer loses,” Pierre Duguay, the bank’s deputy governor, told the Senate finance committee last spring. “However, on balance it evens out.”
By Jaime Weinman - Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 12:35 PM - 7 Comments
I have to admit that I’m enjoying The Big Bang Theory more than How I Met Your Mother this season, at least overall. (TBBT has no depth whatsoever, so it’s impossible for it to come up with an individual episode that’s as good as HIMYM’s “Shelter Island.”) What makes the show consistently entertaining is, as everyone knows, the character of Sheldon (Jim Parsons); but more importantly, it’s the relationship between Sheldon and Penny (Kaley Cuoco) that has become the hit of this show. I’ve theorized in the past that comedies, more than any other type of show, depend heavily not on individual characters but on character relationships; a comedy should have at least one character relationship that is so strong that we are actually happy, filled with anticipation, when those two characters have a scene together. For some reason, Sheldon/Penny has become that kind of relationship; along with Liz and Jack on 30 Rock it may be the best comedy relationship on TV at the moment. As we saw in last night’s episode, they have a strange combination of antagonism and mutual respect. She’s annoyed by his insanity and the fact that his friends are too wimpy to stand up to him, but likes the fact that he doesn’t treat her like a bimbo; he’s angered by the way she messes up the sacred routines of his lifestyle, but admires her for not being intimidated by him. Their scenes together are a nice reminder that the best male-female relationships often have nothing to do with sexual tension — since their relationship would not work if Sheldon was sexually attracted to her (or, for that matter, in any human).
On the other hand, Leonard has clearly become the weakest link on TBBT. (The weakest character should have been Penny, who was the weakest character when the show began, but the Sheldon scenes have turned her into a popular character — sort of like Tracey on 30 Rock has been saved from annoyingness by his excellent chemistry with Kenneth.) He doesn’t do much more these days than stand around whining that everybody else is acting crazy.